Haifa: Real Estate,
a million years of experience
Carmel Caves
Looking for an appartment:
In local Haifa newspapers on Fridays
Kolbo Haifa

in newspapers:
Maariv, Yedioth Acharonoth, Jerusalem Post, Haaretz (Friday special

On little advertisements attached to poles, pannels, bus stops or in
page d'accueil
6 questions for  2008
Measurement of the surface of the appartment
Make sure the appartment you intend to buy is
registered at the Tabo
October  2008
Apartment rents generally stable
Ariel Rosenberg             Globes

Average rent for a two-room apartment fell 2-4% in greater
Tel Aviv in September, compared with August.
Rent for small apartments, especially for students, in Tel
Aviv, Ramat Gan, and Givatayim fell slightly in September,
according to the monthly Madas survey.
The average rent for a two-room apartment in south Tel
Aviv was NIS 2,665 per month in September, 4% less than
in August. The average rent for a two-room apartment in
central Tel Aviv fell 2% to NIS 3,320 per month, and it fell
by less than 1% in north Tel Aviv to NIS 3,686. The average
rent for a two-room apartment in Ramat Gan and
Givatayim fell 3% to NIS 2,977.
Rent for two-room apartments in the rest of the country was
barely changed in September, compared with August.
Average rent for a two-room apartment was NIS 2,759 in
Jerusalem, NIS 1,581 in Haifa and the Krayot, and NIS
1,493 in Beersheva.
Madas business development director Neomy
Schulman-Benisty said, "Rent will fall in the coming
months because students will have returned to university
and will no longer be included among apartment-seekers.
This will reduce demand and rent."
Rent for three-room apartments was also almost unchanged
nationwide in September, compared with the preceding
month. The average rent for a three-room apartment in
south Tel Aviv rose 1.5% to NIS 3,251, it rose 0.6% in
central Tel Aviv, and it was NIS 4,787 in north Tel Aviv and
the trans-Yarkon neighborhoods. The average rent for a
three-room apartment was unchanged at NIS 3,807 in
Ramat Gan and Givatayim, and at NIS 1,811 in Haifa and
the Krayot. The average rent for a three-room apartment
fell by 0.9% to NIS 3,487 in Jerusalem and it fell 1% to NIS
1,638 in Beersheva
Anglo Saxon
Israel Immo
Agence Israel
Real Estate Index Listing
A new project called "Freud's dreams!"Only in Haifa:
Q1 sees 16% drop in sales of new flats
Rise in sales of new apartments recorded in Haifa
and Jerusalem districts, while Tel Aviv, central and
southern districts see drop compared to same period
in 2008
Ory Chudy, Calcalist
The housing market continues to suffer from a decline in
the sales of new apartments across Israel, the Central
Bureau of Statistics revealed in figures released Thursday.
According to the data, the first three months of 2009 saw a
16% drop in the sales of privately-built new flats across the
country, compared to the same period last year.
The CBS data also revealed that some 44% of all the new
apartments sold were located in the central district, and
some 24% were in the Tel Aviv area.
The Haifa district saw a 14% rise in the sales of
apartments, and the Jerusalem district saw a 1.7% rise
compared to the same period in 2008.
On the other hand, a drop has been recorded in the sales
of new apartments between January and March in Tel
Aviv (-21.8%), the southern district (-20.3%) and the
central district (-18.7%).
The northern district saw 112 new apartments sold
between the months of January and March compared to
122 apartments during the same period in 2008. In the
West Bank, 72 new flats were sold in privately-initiated
buildings between January and March, compared to 104
apartments sold in the same period in 2008.
The number of new apartments for sale in privately-
initiated buildings initiated is decreasing, reaching 9,460
apartments in the end of March – a 4% drop compared to
the end of March 2008.

from Ynet, May 4 2000

Average rent in NIS/month according to winwin   September 2009
 2rooms     3 rooms    
Haifa                      2890          3250
Tel Aviv center        3950          4650
Tel Aviv North        3870          4950
Guide du logement du Ministere de l'Absorption
You can find one or several  room mates to share a large appartment

Haifa OKs new neighborhood with affordable apartments

By Arik Mirovsky    From Haaretz 24/6/2010
Haifa is going to get a new neighborhood, featuring affordable
housing, located at the foot of Mount Carmel, across from the
Matam high-tech park and south of the Castra and Haifa malls
(and the Israel Electric Corporation tower ). The plan calls for
40% of the apartments to fit the definition of low-cost housing,
with three rooms or less, suitable for young couples.
The plan passed its first hurdle yesterday, winning approval from
the local planning and building committee. Some of the
228-dunam (57-acre ) area set aside for the new neighborhood is
state-owned, with the remainder in private hands.
Nearly half of the land - 100 dunams - is zoned for housing, while
44 dunam is slated to remain as open space and 21 dunams are
earmarked for public buildings.
In Haifa, people generally prefer to live on Mount Carmel. The
municipality, however, believes the area in question has high
potential because of its proximity to the sea and to the Matam
high-tech park. It also has convenient access to bus and train
stations as well as the shopping malls.
The apartment buildings in the new neighborhood are to be six to
seven stories high. Housing prices are expected to range between
NIS 8,000 and NIS 9,000 per square meter, which means that a
3-room apartment would cost from NIS 650,000 to NIS 700,000.
The largest apartments, with five rooms, are likely to cost around
NIS 1.2 million.
Haifa mayor Yona Yahav commented that developers have shown
keen interest to build in the new neighborhood. The city as a whole
is experiencing a building boom, Yahav said: this year alone the
construction of 1,100 apartments has begun. The new
neighborhood would strengthen Haifa's status as the main city of
northern Israel, the mayor added.
20/9/10   A new plan of  municipal B&B

31/1/11   December sees 48% drop in TA flat sales
Despite decline, average price of new apartment in 2010
was about 3.5% higher compared to 2009 Ofer Petersburg  
The real estate market is going into a freeze, apartment
prices are dropping and the rent prices in central Israel,
the Sharon region and Jerusalem are going up, according
to figures released by the Finance Ministry for the month
of December.
The purchase of new apartments in the Tel Aviv area
plummeted by 48% and by 10% in the Sharon region.
December saw a general drop of about 7% in the number
of deals signed compared to November, while the prices of
new apartments dropped by 0.6% compared to November.
The decline rate may be lower compared to the three
previous months, but the sharp drops were in the
Jerusalem area (-3%) and Tel Aviv area (-1.8%). Stability
in prices was recorded in the Sharon region, while in the
Haifa area prices continued to rise, although moderately
Despite the decline, on an annual average the price of a
new apartment in 2010 was about 3.5% higher compared
to 2009.
While the purchase of apartments for residential purposes
dropped by 10% compared to November, the total number
of apartments purchased for investment rose by 2%. The
investors' part in the real estate market thus grew,
reaching close to one-third of investments, similar to the
record levels recorded in the third quarter of 2009,
following an almost continuous drop since the last quarter
of 2009.
Assuming the jump in the purchase of apartments for
investment in the second half of December stemmed from
early purchases due to the expected tax increase, a
significant drop could be expected in the purchase of
apartments for investment purposes in early 2011.
The rate of apartments sold by investors in December saw
a moderate drop, excluding the Tel Aviv area and central
area, which recorded a significant decline.
Gad Lior contributed to this report
From Y net
7/2011  Haifa, tent city
How to be safe as houses when buying a home
It's real simple: Before you purchase a home, make sure you do all the basic calculations.
By Nathan Sheva  From Haaretz 27/2/12

A couple in their 40s with two kids wanted to buy a home. The husband worked at a high-tech firm and the wife was an
architect. Together they netted about NIS 30,000 a month, and a few years ago they went ahead and did it: They built a
house at a cost of NIS 2.5 million.

To do it, they used up their savings and needed a NIS 1.4 million mortgage, on which they repaid NIS 7,000 a month.

First, the construction costs came in NIS 200,000 higher than budgeted. They borrowed the money from friends and other
sources. Second, sometime after they moved in, the husband lost his job. He had trouble finding work and they defaulted on
their repayments. Letters began to arrive from the bank, but the couple didn't believe that the bank would foreclose on the
house. Interest on debt in arrears is higher, and their interest payments began to mount fast.

Meanwhile, the real estate market began to slow. Ultimately they were forced to sell the house at a low price relative to their
investment. After the sale the couple was left owing hundreds of thousands of shekels to the bank and to friends.

There are many stories like this. The common denominator is a failure to plan the investment properly. The couple invested
more than they could afford and didn't have contingency plans for a rainy day.

Buying a house using borrowed money - a mortgage - is a long-term process. Chances are you'll be repaying that loan for 20
years. How can you make plans for a period that long?

You can't, but you can minimize the potential for mistakes.

How much can you afford?

Buying a home is essentially making a very big investment, and probably a very risky one. But just as nobody in their right
mind would invest more than they could afford in stocks, the same should apply to a house.

The process of buying a house should start with calculating your budget. Once you know exactly how much cash you're
putting up, and how much you can afford to repay each month, you know the price you can afford. Price will also dictate
location and size.

If you start by finding a home you love, rather than by seeking a home that meets your budget, you may be asking for

"Think of buying a house like buying a second-hand car," advises Yossi Esh of Esh-Lidor, a real estate consultancy for
homebuyers. "Usually we define our budget, then look to see what car we can afford. The problem is that too many people
do things backwards - first they think what home they want, then they start calculating the costs."

How much equity can you put together?

The second stage of buying a home is checking whether you can bring in enough cash to the deal. The more cash, the
smaller the mortgage and therefore the smaller your monthly payments. You might want to cash out training funds and
savings accounts, but don't touch your pension savings - if only because you stand to lose about a third of the sum in
penalties. If possible, tap the parents.

How much equity do you need? Usually you'll have to put up at least 40% of the price, but if possible, more is better. You
can borrow 60% of the value of the home or even more, but the interest rate you pay will be higher. (The greater the
proportion paid by the mortgage, the greater risk the bank is taking, and it will want compensation for that. )

Note that beefing up equity by borrowing from someone other than the bank, be it an uncle or the workplace or your credit
card company, is no help: Those loans also have to be repaid, notes Amit Kaminsky, chief executive of AMG Mortgages.
What's more, loans of that type can turn sour too and then feelings get involved. If you don't have the equity, put a purchase
on ice: Save more and rent a home for the meantime, Kaminsky advises.

The important thing is not to stretch the boundaries. The cost of moving, buying new furniture and general repairs can add
tens of thousands of shekels, too.

Attorney Eli Gon of the Shraga Buda law offices, who represents mortgage banks repossessing dwellings, recommends
putting aside the equivalent of six months in mortgage installments for a rainy day if you can't make the payments; for
instance, if you get fired or sick.

To what extent are monthly mortgage payments binding?

Before you sign on the dotted line, think carefully about whether your life is structured to take on a monthly commitment
over time. You may not fully grasp what a mortgage means.

First and foremost, understand what you're getting into. "We see a lot of people who don't see the difference in difficulty
between returning NIS 3,000 a month or NIS 5,000," says a mortgage banker. "Some people say they'll take as much as the
bank will let them. Or they think that if the bank approves a certain mortgage, the buyer will be able to afford the monthly
payments, but that isn't necessarily true."

Repayment ability isn't just a function of monthly income, it's a lifestyle issue, the banker adds. Some people are prepared to
work day and night and forgo certain luxuries to make sure they don't default, others are more casual.

How much of your salary can you allocate?

Having decided to take out a mortgage, the next stage is to decide how much of your salary you can afford to earmark for
monthly repayments - or, how much you need to live on. CEO Gil Orly of Yevulim, a financial consultancy for households,
says the rule of thumb is families shouldn't plan on paying more than 20% to 25% of the parents' combined income.

AMG's Kaminsky thinks up to 30% is fine but less is better. "If you're putting up 40% of the equity and are paying out 30%
of your monthly pay, you might think about getting a more modest place," he suggests. "Couples netting NIS 17,000 or NIS
18,000 a month can take out a mortgage of NIS 5,000 a month and the bank will generally approve that. But taking a
mortgage of NIS 5,000 a month for 20 years is too big a commitment." They'd be better off settling for a home costing them
NIS 4,000 a month or NIS 4,500.

Do you have job security?

Making long-term commitments begs the question: How secure is your job? And what sort of job is it?

A civil servant's status, for example, isn't that of a private-sector worker, let alone a self-employed person. Nor is the status
of a person on fixed pay the same as a salesman earning commissions, for instance. If you feel that the financial ground
under your feet isn't steady, you'd better take a smaller mortgage.

The bank also looks at potential earnings power. It will distinguish between a computer-science student and a
basket-weaving student.

When doing your math, think about what things you can forgo. If you're the type that likes to eat out twice a week and can't
even think about getting rid of the second family car, don't rely on being able to forgo those luxuries if the crunch comes.
"People have shown they can lower their standard of living for a short time but they have difficulty adjusting to a lower
standard of living over time," says Orly.

The cost of raising children must also be considered. Kids can cost thousands of shekels a month, each. The more children a
family has, the harder it can be to adjust costs if needed, warns a mortgage banker.

The bottom line is that opting for a smaller, more affordable home over a bigger place will save you money. And later in life,
when you can afford something better, you can sell and get a bigger place.

It's true that taxes, legal fees and moving will cost you tens of thousands of shekels each time you do this, but then there's
the huge savings on interest payments, points out Kaminsky. The smaller the apartment, the lower city tax and other bills are
likely to be. With equity of half a million shekels, he thinks buying a home for a million is reasonable. But better wait before
buying a bigger place.